by Colin Campbell
NICOLA Sturgeon has ruled out another lockdown despite the rising number of virus infections.
At least she’s got something right.
After 18 months maybe she’s finally become tired of issuing diktats over how we live every aspect of our daily lives.
Or maybe even she realises that trying to reintroduce curbs and a new batch of restrictive rules and regulations would be a step too far.
Other than among those who seem to want to live in perpetual fear of the virus, they would be impossible to enforce.
Normality, other than masks – which are mercifully becoming much less in evidence on the streets – has been restored.
And the overwhelming majority of people are not going to give it up again.
Sturgeon said the rise in infections was partly due to the “increased interactions” caused by the return of schools.
But she added: “My job in times like these is not to be popular – it’s to take any decisions, no matter how difficult, that are necessary to keep us safe and I will certainly not hesitate to do that.”
However, she said she was “not currently considering a circuit-breaker lockdown”, after speculation that this was one of the options on the table to arrest the rise in cases.
Nor will she be considering one in the future. Her popularity has fallen from its high point at the time when she reigned over the land at the height of crisis. Any more attempts at draconian interference in people’s lives would see it crash.
Still trying, however, to vaguely sound like super-nanny, her view that it is her responsibility “to keep us safe” and her words that she will take even the most difficult decisions sound completely hollow.
As the most obvious example, she abdicated responsibility on “tough decisions” when she passed responsibility for the size of football crowds to local councils.
Glasgow Council promptly decided it was fine to have 50,000 plus people crowding into Ibrox and Parkhead based on no scientific advice whatsoever and there Sturgeon’s enthusiasm and credibility for making “tough decisions” ended.
And it will be impossible to restore.
In the Highlands, despite the influx of tourists, the numbers of people in hospital with the virus across the region has remained in the 10-15 bracket, out of a population of more than 200,000.
And no-one has been seriously ill in intensive care for weeks.
These are the figures that matter. Thanks to the UK Government’s vaccine success, even in the extremely unlikely event of contracting the virus, the symptoms would be mild to non-existent.
Some people still haven’t been able to conquer their virus fears, and unfortunately, maybe they never will.
But the vast majority of people have returned to life as normal, accepting the virus is indeed “something we just have to live with”.
Assessing the mood of the public rather than dictating what people can and cannot do, it seems Sturgeon has now got that message too.